New research from Ovum finds that a string of low-cost pay-TV service launches have stimulated the Eastern European TV sector to such an extent that more than half of the region’s homes have signed up to pay-TV services.
As the region’s TV business enters a dynamic new growth phase, Ovum forecasts that annual pay-TV revenue in the region will be worth nearly $11bn by 2019.
“Piracy and low levels of disposable income have been holding back the TV business in Eastern Europe for years,” observes Adam Thomas, Ovum’s Lead Analyst for Global TV Markets. “But the subscriber scale generated by these new services is now being exploited by the rollout of more sophisticated TV services. The trend we have found is a focus towards monetization and away from purely growing subscriber numbers.”
The region provides a complex mix of markets at various stages of progress. As part of its new research, Ovum has produced a “maturity index” to analyse where each market sits in terms of development. This found a wide range of position points ranging from mature markets, such as the Czech Republic and Poland, to fast emerging nations including Russia and Serbia.
According to Thomas: “Even in territories like Ukraine and Slovakia, where pay-TV subscriber growth is limited, Ovum’s research has found significant revenue growth. This is likely to be replicated across the region with operators working creatively to generate incremental revenue from existing clients by improving both content and service delivery.”